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 • Wise County
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George "Machine Gun" Kelley
Original name: George Barnes
Birth: 1897
Death: Jul. 17, 1954

Machine Gun Kelley was a notorious, depression-era gangster, bank robber and kidnapper. He went to public schools as a child before becoming a salesman and later, a bootlegger. He married Kathryn Thorne in 1927 and it was his wife who encouraged him to become involved in a life of crime, bought him a machine gun and gave him the nickname “Machine Gun”. He concentrated on running illegal alcohol and robbing banks until July 22, 1933 when Kelley and Albert Bates, a career criminal with a lengthy record, kidnapped Charles F. Urschel, one of Oklahoma’s wealthiest men, from his home in Oklahoma City. A $200,000 ransom was paid and Urschel returned home on July 31. As a result of information Mr. Urschel provided the FBI regarding his kidnapping, the resulting investigation led to the arrests of Machine Gun Kelley, his wife Kathryn, her parents, Mr. & Mrs. R.G. Shannon, their son Armon, and Harvey J. Bailey, who was an escaped bank robber and also wanted for the murder of three policemen. An additional 15 people were arrested and convicted for helping Kelley and Bates with the planning and the execution of the kidnapping. When George and Kathryn Kelley were arrested, caught without a weapon, Kelley cried, “Don’t shoot, G-Men!” thus giving FBI agents the nickname “G-men.” Kelley and his wife Kathryn were convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment. George “Machine Gun” Kelley died of a heart attack at the Federal Penitentiary in Leavenworth, Kansas on July 17, 1954. Kathryn Kelley was released from prison in Cincinnati in 1958. (bio by: Craig Johnson) 

Cause of death: Heart attack
 
Burial:
Cottondale Cemetery
Cottondale
Wise County
Texas, USA
GPS (lat/lon): 33.06479, -97.70732
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Record added: Jul 13, 1998
Find A Grave Memorial# 3148
George Machine Gun Kelley
Added by: Mr. Ed
 
George Machine Gun Kelley
Added by: M. A.
 
George Machine Gun Kelley
Added by: Melody Brickle
 
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REST IN PEACE
- Tom "Homer" W.
 Added: Apr. 9, 2014

- J Spencer
 Added: Dec. 17, 2013

- Bob
 Added: Oct. 21, 2013
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